Mbanderu Split Shows No Sign of Healing

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By Kuvee Kangueehi AMINUIS Mbanderu Chief Munjuku Nguvauva last weekend failed to reach a compromise with a section of his tribesmen in the Aminuis constituency, while the two parties could not even agree on a venue for a meeting. The meeting, which was intended to address the ongoing dispute in the Aminuis constituency, did not take place because members of a ‘concerned group’ wanted the chief to meet them at Okombepera and not at Ondjiripumua where the chief was. In the end, the chief addressed his followers at Ondjiripumua. The meeting between Nguvauva and the ‘concerned group’of Aminuis as they are known was supposed to discuss the removal of Senior Traditional Councillor Ludwig Karumendu from office after he refused to back Senior Traditional Councillor Erastus Tjiundikua Kahuure in the wrangle that pits the latter with Nguvauva. Earlier, a section of the community that represents the concerned group announced that they had removed Karumendu from office and replaced him with his second in command Sondy Tjiroze, after passing a motion of no-confidence in him. Members of the ‘concerned group’ who met at Okombepera contended that they had invited the chief to come and listen to their complaints and thus they had to choose the venue. This group argued that the Ondjiripumua meeting was orchestrated by Karumendu and people who favoured the adoption of the Mban-deru constitution which is at the centre of the controversy. A section of the Aminuis community are opposed to the constitution. Despite the failure of the chief to address the gathering at Okombepera, the meeting resolved that the decision to remove Karumendu would stand. The meeting also resolved that they would seek an audience with the Regional Councillor Erwin Uanguta and Omaheke Governor Laura McLeod to inform them about the new developments and that Karumendu was no longer their representative in the Aminuis constituency. The meeting at Ondjiripumua went ahead as scheduled despite the fact that only fifteen people from Aminuis were in attendance. Some of the people at the meeting came from Epukiro and included the Senior Councillor from Epukiro Gerson Katjirua, Senior Councillor from Windhoek Ripuree Tjozongoro and Deputy Minister of Fisheries Kilus Nguvauva. Similarly, the meeting at Okombepera was attended by local people and from outside Aminuis from as far as Windhoek and Otjombinde. The weekend developments between Nguvauva and the Aminuis community provided a serious test for the chief’s authority in the Aminuis constituency. The incident represents a split based on factions in the Mbanderu community and could signal that the ailing Nguvauva may be losing his grip on the entire Mbanderu community after being at the helm of the Mbanderu community for over forty-five years. – Nguvauva II is the grandson of Hijatuvao Nguvauva, who was the son of the famous Ovambanderu Chief Kahimemua Nguvauva. Nguvauva was born on 1 January 1923 at Maun, Botswana, to Keharanjo Nguvauva and his mother Kavetjindire Nguvauva. The chief received no formal western education but was educated by his father and father’s Advisory Council in customary law. He was inducted into upholding tradition and fulfilling traditional Mbanderu rites such as maintaining the holy fire and communicating with his ancestors. Nguvauva was trained also to be a leader in the sense of being a parent to his community. His education was steeped in the history of the Ovambanderu and his predecessors. Because of his royal lineage, his upbringing was aimed at preparing him for an eventual leadership role. He was consequently installed as leader of the Ovambanderu in Botswana in 1951 in accordance with the legacy of the great Chief Kahimemua Nguvauva who was killed while opposing German colonial rule. Munjuku returned from Botswana in 1952. The Ovambanderu (Mbanderu Council) of Epukiro and Aminuis appointed Munjuku Nguvauva II as Ovambanderu Chief on 15 December1952 at Epukiro Pos 3. On 10 October 1960 the Ovambanderu appointed him as Paramount Chief. The ongoing fight is believed to be centred around his succession. – Klaus Dierks (source)